Weather Eye: It's truly summer – warm, dry, more of the same to come

By Patrick Timm, Columbian weather columnist

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The Fourth of July turned out as good as can be expected with mostly sunny skies and warm temperatures, a little cool at fireworks time. Friday and Saturday were nicer with highs into the 80s. Yes, summer is officially here.

Today will see highs in the upper 80s, maybe 90 degrees.

The extended forecast shows no rain and warm temperatures continuing, so full speed ahead with summer.

We will see afternoon and evening thunderstorms creeping up the Cascades but they should stay over and east of the mountains. If we are lucky, we may see some impressive lightning off to the east tonight and Monday evening.

Our average mean temperature for July was running 1.9 degrees below average through Friday with 64.6 degrees, but should be above average very soon. Rainfall is about a quarter-inch below average with just 0.17 of an inch in the bucket at Vancouver. It may end up a dry month unless we get a sneak attack from a thunderstorm or two.

A year ago, I wrote: "The snow melt is still finding its way down regional rivers. Early this week Timberline Lodge still had 100 inches of snow on the ground. That would make a bunch of snow cones, cherry syrup please! By the way, I discovered a vendor selling snow cones (not from Mt. Hood) at the corner of Northeast Highway 99 and 117th Street near Salmon Creek. I sure enjoy those on a warm sunny day and they are hard to find."

The current snow depth near Timberline is 65 inches and the snow cone stand is still there. Enjoy both!

Patrick Timm is a local weather specialist. His column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Reach him at http://weathersystems.com.